Other News: Mosque Bombings Kill at Least 9 in Pakistan
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JUDY WOODRUFF: In other news today, the United Nations
Security Council expanded sanctions against North Korea. The unanimous vote
follows North Korea’s
nuclear test last month, a violation of international law. This resolution
imposes new sanctions on the communist nation’s weapons exports and financial
dealings. And it allows U.N. member nations to inspect North Korean ships
carrying suspicious cargo in ports and at sea.
A pair of suicide bombings rocked Pakistan, killing at least nine
people, including one of the country’s most prominent anti-Taliban clerics. The
attacks targeted two cities and went off within minutes of each other. One
explosion hit a religious school run by the cleric in Lahore. The other hit a mosque next to an
army depot in the northwest.
Congress sent legislation to control tobacco to the White
House today. It gives the federal government vast new powers to regulate
cigarettes. The House voted to endorse the measure that passed yesterday in the
Senate. It puts the Food and Drug Administration in charge of what goes into
tobacco products and how they are marketed. Moments after the House vote,
President Obama spoke in the White House Rose Garden.
U.S. President BARACK OBAMA: For over a decade, leaders of
both parties have fought to prevent tobacco companies from marketing their
products to children and provide the public with the information they need to
understand what a dangerous habit this is. And, after a decade of opposition,
all of us are finally about to achieve the victory with this bill, a bill that
truly defines change in Washington.
JUDY WOODRUFF: Later, White House Press Secretary Robert
Gibbs said the president himself still struggles with a nicotine addiction. But
he would not say if the president still smokes cigarettes.
Executives from General Motors and Chrysler were on Capitol
Hill again today to defend how they dealt with closing hundreds of dealerships.
They appeared before members of a House oversight committee and faced a barrage
of questions. “NewsHour” correspondent Kwame Holman has more.
MAN: Please raise your right — right hand to take the oath.
KWAME HOLMAN: Even before the top executives of GM and
Chrysler were allowed to deliver their opening statements this morning, members
had strong words for them, saying auto dealers in their districts were being
targeted. Mike Doyle is a Democrat from Pennsylvania.
REP. MIKE DOYLE, D-Pa.: You can’t take people like this off
– you just can’t replace people like this. I don’t understand how they’re
costing you money. I think they’re a revenue stream for you guys. And, if some
reason this has to happen, I want to know why you’re not taking care of people
who have spent 70 years and generations selling your cars.
KWAME HOLMAN: Under Chrysler’s plan, 789 dealers have
received notice they will be dropped. GM plans to cut more than 1,300
dealerships. GM CEO Fritz Henderson said the dealership closures were
FRITZ HENDERSON, chief executive officer, General Motors:
The sacrifices, all painful, that we are all making are necessary to put GM on
a brighter path toward long-term viability and success. We owe this to the U.S.
KWAME HOLMAN: Chrysler’s James Press said the decisions had
not been taken lightly. JAMES PRESS, deputy chief executive officer, Chrysler:
This is a very painful process. Going through bankruptcy was not our — our
choice. The company is no longer functioning organization.
KWAME HOLMAN: But lawmakers from both parties criticized the
way dealers were treated in the process. Joe Barton is a Republican from Texas.
REP. JOE BARTON, R-Texas: It’s somewhat unfair to be told
that their dealerships are going to be revoked, and, yet, they didn’t have any
prior knowledge of the analysis and the criteria that were being used.
KWAME HOLMAN: In what was sometimes emotional testimony, the
cut-off dealers said the fallout was immediate.
DANIEL KIEKENAPP, Tacoma Dodge: We have been reduced to
being a used car lot and a neighborhood automobile repair facility. In the
process, 35 faithful and loyal long-term employees have lost their jobs.
FRANK BLANKENBECKLER, Carlisle Chevrolet: In a period of 24
hours, my business was essentially taken from me, with no real explanation,
other than that these are difficult times.
KWAME HOLMAN: Lawmakers have introduced a bill to restore
dealers’ franchise agreements, a move that could become a test for the Obama
administration’s effort to remake the auto industry.
JUDY WOODRUFF: Former President George H.W. Bush celebrated
his 85th birthday by skydiving over the coast of Maine. He made a tandem jump with a member
of the Army’s Golden Knights Parachute Team. They landed near a church in Kennebunkport, where the
Bushes have a summer home. Former first lady Barbara Bush greeted her husband.
And the rest of the family were on hand for the event.
JUDY WOODRUFF: On Wall Street today, the Dow Jones
industrial average gained 28 points, to close at 8799. The Nasdaq fell three
points, to close at 1858. For the week, the Dow gained
fourth-tenths-of-a-percent. The Nasdaq rose a half-a-percent.